confirmed – Stanford University

Rick McCharles

I’ll be visiting the high flying Stanford Men’s team Jan. 29th, ranked #1 in the preseason poll.

31 October 2007: Alexander Buscaglia during practice at the Ford Center in Stanford, CA.

high res photo available for sale – Stanford Photo : Buscaglia103107_15.jpg – Credit David Gonzales

You get the feeling the Cardinal is destined to win Championships at home April 17-19th. Certainly they are the team to beat. I say this despite their upset loss this weekend to cross town rivals Berkeley. (Stanford was missing Sender and Nakamori who were training at the Olympic Training Center.)

Stanford Men’s Gymnastics

And I’m really looking forward to visiting the exciting Stanford Women’s Team on Jan. 28th.

larger photo

Many are predicting BIG things. GymGemz ranked them #2 in their preseason poll. Gymblog feels Stanford has the talent to contend for a Championship.

Stanford Women’s Gymnastics

gymnasts training pommel horse – Iarov

A short snippet of the training videos from coach Edouard Iarov in France in the 1990s. These kids were way ahead of their time.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Iarov, former coach of Valeri Liukin, is currently National Coach of Canada.

Related posts:

  • Liukin and Iarov – back together again
  • spotting “Stutz” on P Bars
  • giant swings – Parallel Bars
  • Rhonda Faehn, Cory Hartung, Florida v Georgia

    Interview with Coach Rhonda Faehn following Florida’s narrow loss to Georgia on Jan. 18, 2008. (No sign of the baby.)
    (Video by Tricia Coyne/The Gainesville Sun)

    Looks like Florida just might be my favourite team again this season. They are going BIG difficulty. A risky strategy — but great for the fans.

    Can Cory Hartung challenge for the All-around at Championships?

    Haze – the movie

    With the wonderful NCAA College gymnastics schedule in full swing, a sad documentary about College hazing is being completed.

    The trailer to the film is streamed on this page:

    A documentary concerning the death of Chi Psi pledge Lynn Gordon Bailey, Jr. (Gordie) due to a hazing incident held near CU Boulder. A documentary about the crisis facing America: young people are dying in increasing numbers due to alcohol abuse. A documentary that takes a hard look at lifestyles of young people within America’s Universities, Sororities and Fraternities.


    But I have never feared to send our gymnasts off to College in the NCAA.

    University athletes away from home for the first time tend to be very focused on academics and their Team. I’ve always been impressed with how well they are taken care of by College coaches and support staff.

    gymnastics parallel bar blocks are safer

    Canadian Junior National Coach Markos Baikas of Taiso Gymnastics likes his new Gaofei Parallel Blocks from China.

    Many of the drills we do on P Bars can be done on padded boxes much more safely.


    The biggest worry for coaches of young gymnasts is injury to the sternum and chest. These boxes go as narrow as you wish.


    More photos from Taiso Gymnastics, Saskatoon, Canada.

    The first set of PBar boxes I bought from another company, quickly deteriorated. This Gaofei version look much sturdier.

    who is this acrobatic maniac Damien Walters?

    We’ve posted some video in the past:

  • via Jump Club
  • The CURIOSITY Show
  • Is he Canadian? British? Gay?

    Damien’s definitely a superb tumbler. (22nd at Worlds in Quebec City 2007, I believe.) And his latest parkour / martial arts / gymnastics showreel is the best thing I’ve seen in weeks. Funny, original, well-edited:

    Click PLAY or watch him on YouTube.

    (via Straight to the Bar)

    Seems Damien’s also won the Olympics. How about that?

    The 2006 Olympics on Beam. Here’s the proof. (You may want to close your eyes when he gets to his signature skill, the “Walters”. It’s every girl’s worst nightmare.)

    Click PLAY or watch the YouTube Men’s Olympic Champion on Beam.

    I like the threat down at the end. Damien claims he plans to add the “free headstand” to his beam routine.

    Damien. Clear up the mystery, bloke, eh?

    Who are you?

    new blog – The Olympic Effect

    The most detailed overview yet of the main candidates for the US Women’s Olympic Team. Well worth a read.

    I don’t agree with many assumptions made about the selection process which will be used by Martha Karolyi and the committee. Trust me. Their motivation will be to put the team on the floor who can hit the highest A-start routines. Confidence and consistency will decide it.

    But I completely agree with this bit:

    Courtney Kupets and Ashley Postell

    … Less we repeat the mistakes of 2004, Martha Karolyi should keep all doors open for Kupets and Postell to return to elite competition. Although she says she won’t try, Kupets is in fantastic shape and has upgraded bars, beam and floor. Prior to her announcement, Kupets was training routines with 7+ A-scores on bars and beam that were designed by Kelli Hill.

    If NCAAs are successful, don’t be shocked if either makes a late bid. Kupets would only have to add her toe on+ tkatchev to her NCAA bar routine. Her bid is more likely than Postell’s because of her long history of good favor with USAG, her mental toughness, competitive consistency, leadership, and prowess on the Uneven Bars—USA’s weakest event.

    Both girls are hesitant to try, which is likely due to wariness about their political standing with USAG. Sacramone was discouraged from competing in the NCAA and the national team staff is unlikely to name two team members who have forgone the traditional camp system. Kupets’ bid was curtailed after she was unable to secure an academic waiver for a lightened course load. In 2004, Kate Richardson benefited from UCLA’s quarter system, which allowed her to withdraw from her courses after the NCAA Championships.

    Olympic Team Outlook- USA Women’s Gymnastics

    NCAA trains confidence and consistency. Right?

    The pressure of the Olympics is no greater than that at NCAA Championships.

    Here’s Courtney on Bars in Athens 2004. Click PLAY or watch her on YouTube.

    Kupets finished 2nd in a narrow win for her Dogs over Florida tonight.

    Postell will be inducted into the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame. In conjunction with Olympic Trials. (Or will she be competing?)

    Chalked Up: Inside Elite Gymnastics’ Merciless Coaching, Overzealous Parents, Eating Disorders, and Elusive Olympic Dreams

    This yet-to-be-released book should sell a kerzillion copies. In the Olympic year.

    It’s written by Jennifer Sey, ex-Parkette gymnast. Recall the name?

    At her first major international meet, the 1985 World Championships, Jennifer Sey fell off the uneven bars and broke her femur (one of the bones in the leg). At the time, she was not being spotted by her coach because the official rules prevented coaches from being on the podium during routines. As a result of this injury, the rules were changed to allow spotting (though not at Olympic competition).

    Whatever Happened to Jennifer Sey

    I’m suspicious. Suspicious because it’s easy to dog pile on Parkettes after the brutal CNN documentary about the club called Achieving The Perfect 10.

    Chalked Up: Inside Elite Gymnastics' Merciless Coaching, Overzealous Parents, Eating Disorders, and Elusive Olympic Dreams


    On the other hand, it’s getting some praise:

    “Chalked Up pulls no punches…Sey’s writing is brilliant…offering perceptive psychoanalysis of everyone in her isolated world…Chalked Up is proof that she still has alot of guts.”
    — International Gymnast

    “She has eloquently and fairly exposed a dark side to our sport that parents have long needed to be made aware of.”
    — Dominique Moceanu, Olympic Gold Medal Winning Gymnast

    Harper Collins

    I’ll buy a copy when it comes out in 3 months. And suspend judgment until then.

    (via a new blog The Olympic Effect)